Detroit Lions' Ndamukong Suh Should Be Suspended for the Rest of the NFL Season

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Detroit Lions' Ndamukong Suh Should Be Suspended for the Rest of the NFL Season
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Disregard for following the rules has cost Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh three fines in the last season-and-a-half, totaling over $42,000.

Suh’s latest idiotic moment on Thanksgiving against the Green Bay Packers proves to be his worst work yet.

After going to the ground with Green Bay’s Evan Dietrich-Smith, Suh blatantly slammed the guard’s helmet into the turf three or four times before stomping his foot into Dietrich-Smith’s chest and right arm.

Suh was immediately flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct and was ejected from the contest in the third quarter.

“What I did was remove myself from the situation in the best way I felt, me being held down in the situation I was in,” Suh said after the game Thursday. “My intentions were not to kick anybody, as I did not, removing myself as you see, I'm walking away from the situation.

“I was on top of a guy being pulled down and trying to get up off the ground. Why you see me pushing his helmet down [is] because I'm trying to remove myself from the situation. And as I'm getting up, I'm getting pushed, so I'm getting myself on balance and getting out of the situation.

“I know what I did, and the man upstairs knows what I did.”

Unless Suh is referring to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell as the all-knowing “man upstairs,” he can expect much more than a fourth fine in only his second year.

If Goodell had any stones, he would take this as the golden opportunity to enforce his iron-fist style of discipline. Suh is the perfect model to use to intimidate other players from ever doing something as stupid and disrespectful as Suh did.

A similar situation occurred in the 2006 NFL season, when Tennessee Titans' then-defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth stepped on Dallas Cowboys center Andre Gurode’s head after ripping off his helmet. Gurode would require 30 stitches to repair the cuts to his head.

At the time, rookie commissioner Goodell stated: “There is absolutely no place in the game, or anywhere else, for the inexcusable action that occurred in yesterday's Titans-Cowboys game.”

Just like Thursday’s incident, how did the guilty party respond to the allegations?

"What I did out there was disgusting," Haynesworth said after that game. "It doesn't matter what the league does to me. The way I feel right now, you just can't describe it."

Funny, neither Suh nor Haynesworth seemed to take a lot of responsibility for their actions.

Alright Roger, the ball is in your court now.

Goodell suspended Haynesworth a then-NFL-record five games back in 2006 for Haynesworth’s near criminal actions.

What Suh did to the Packers on Thanksgiving was not as severe, but his intentions were clearly the same—violent and unnecessary. That doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be slapped with a suspension similar to Haynesworth.

Today’s NFL suspends players like never before. Just a year ago, Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger got hit with a six-game suspension to start the 2010 campaign after allegations arose he took advantage of a young woman in a Miami bar/club bathroom. No legal actions were ever pressed against Roethlisberger, yet he still missed a quarter of the season. His appeal took the suspension from six to four games.

There’s no reason Goodell shouldn’t serve up justice like never before.

How do you get Suh’s attention? Suspend him for the rest of 2011. That would perhaps get his ears perked just a little.

As the Lions begin to prepare for a tough end to the 2011 season, their playoff hopes rest on how well they do in their next five games. Detroit visits New Orleans, hosts Minnesota, goes to Oakland, welcomes San Diego and concludes at Lambeau Field against Green Bay.

With such a tough schedule left, forcing Suh to miss time would make the uphill battle for the Lions that much tougher. If Goodell truly wants to make an example of Suh to other NFL players and Detroit coaches, another five-game suspension would do just the trick.

There’s no reason to ever do what he did on Thanksgiving, no matter how frustrated he was with the game’s outcome. This type of behavior has to stop. It won’t, however, unless Goodell takes this chance to scare the bejesus out of Suh and make him realize the severity of his actions.

For those wondering if Suh was really a "dirty" player or just had a bad reputation for being overly aggressive, this should supply all the convincing necessary to make the correct decision.

 

Brett Lyons is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. Unless otherwise noted, all quotes were obtained firsthand or from official interview materials.

Follow Brett Lyons on Twitter @BrettLyons670.

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